Sting: All This Time Live Tuscany Italy 2014 (Germany Import) PAL-PAL-PAL-2015 DVD Release Date: 5/1/2015
THIS IS PAL FORMAT WILL NOT PLAY ON STANDARD DVD OR BLU-RAY PLAYER- YOU WILL NEED A UNIVERSAL PLAYER LIKE OPPO OR SONY TO VIEW
Give Sting credit for craftily averting the downside of worldwide pop stardom: finding yourself at 50 playing decades-old hits at some dusty state fair. The trick, of course, is to have your artistic cake and eat it, too; and that's just what the singer has done--reinvented himself first as a coolly crooning jazz head, then infused that sensibility with some spiritually vague Euro-trance affectations.
Sting's Brand New Day touring band languorously reworks 15 songs before a couple hundred handpicked fans during a moonlit Tuscan evening--it's a live shot that feels funkier and less self-conscious than its '80s predecessor, Bring on the Night. While familiar solo-career nuggets like "Set Them Free," "Fields of Gold," and "If I Ever Lose My Faith in You" have insightful new shadings, it's the sparingly doled Police hits that seem rebuilt from the ground up; "Don't Stand So Close to Me" and "Roxanne" are now hued with sad cellos and weary vocals hinting that even sexual tension eventually leads to fatigue. Tasteful, spare, and nearly performance-perfect, ...All This Time is still a far cry from the jazz of Ella Fitzgerald and Mel Torme, and if you hear a quiet, English-accented chuckle behind you in line at the bank, don't turn around. --Jerry McCulley